Social Question

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

When you are in a heated discussion with people online that you know do not share your views, are you trying to change their mind or simply to be heard or validated by others?

Asked by lucillelucillelucille (34325points) October 25th, 2019

What’s your success rate?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

23 Answers

jca2's avatar

I am constantly thinking nobody has ever changed anyone’s mind in regards to politics, religion, etc. so why get heated and even bother to try. On posts about Trump, I will throw in my two cents here and there but I know there are some people who are so pro-Trump that it’s not worth the air I breathe to bother. A long time ago Fluther had a lot of people here talking about Atheism. They would go on and on about how Christianity is stupid and Atheism is the bomb. I used to respond “Can’t we all just get along?” (the words of Rodney King)

I will get annoyed with other people’s views, if I don’t think they’re logical like if someone says abortion is terrible and old man white politicians should be able to govern what women do with their bodies but then on the other hand cut social programs so the babies grow up poor and deprived, but I won’t invest a lot of energy in it or try to argue a whole lot.

Inspired_2write's avatar

Argumentative people will often argue out of a desire to see an emotional response from their opponent.
Don’t show if the interaction is making you upset or angry. Smile.
Show your antagonist you aren’t going to let an argument bring you down.
Sometimes that’s all an angry, argumentative person is looking to do.

Also take note that the argumentative person knows that they have a weak stance and therefore wishes to escalate their behavior ( raising voice, swearing etc) to deflect that.

longgone's avatar

For me, it’s mostly a moral responsibility. I don’t feel the need to argue with personal opinions, but when people translate their experiences and ideas into perceived “fact”, that is important to mention. If harmful opinions remain unchallenged, others might adopt them unquestioningly.

Demosthenes's avatar

Good question. First off, I wouldn’t debate if I didn’t enjoy doing so. I’m speaking of civil debates where there is a real exchange of ideas and information. I find that I learn from them. While the experience doesn’t necessarily change my mind on the subject, it may cause me to re-think my argument, examine what I found I couldn’t defend well, and consequently strengthen and refine my positions. That should be the real goal of debate and obviously, it’s hard to stick that once emotions get involved, but it’s a more worthwhile goal than changing someone’s mind. Other times I’m trying to clear up a misunderstanding re. something I care about deeply: if, for example, someone claims that being gay is a choice and all gay people care about is sex, I’ll dispute that with my personal experiences. I know that the person making such a claim probably isn’t receptive to new ideas, but it’ll be for the benefit of anyone reading.

If I’ve reached the point where the debate is no longer about the subject and it’s devolved into semantics, denials, and gaslighting, then the debate has ceased to be of any use or quality and I’m just pissed off. At that point I’m either just venting frustration or I’d hope to show others that the person I was debating with is intellectually dishonest so others don’t waste their time with them in the future.

marinelife's avatar

The most important part of having a dialogue with someone is listening.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

I don’t get into heated discussions about politics on the internet. I simply pass them by.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@Hawaii_Jake -What about other subjects that you feel strongly about?

josie's avatar

I don’t think I change any minds, and I don’t expect to either.

I certainly do not need validation- I feel perfectly valid, thanks.

But I don’t mind giving my opinion for what it’s worth, to others. Writing out my opinion sometimes clarifies it for me.

Online sites are loaded with ad hominem and ad populum
arguments. Not many folks are going to change their view in the face of a trash argument.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@josie – I agree with you.and your check is in the mail Lo!

LuckyGuy's avatar

“Wow! I never thought about it that way. You’ve totally convinced me!” said no one ever.

I do not expect to change someone’s mind. I can’t recall getting intoa heated debate on line. There is no point.

seawulf575's avatar

Oftentimes I think I am just trying to get a glimmer of how they can believe what they apparently believe. I get into heated arguments with people who are contradictory and SOOOOoooo biased they cannot even admit fault in someone with their same views. I’m trying to understand how facts don’t seem to matter. I cannot think this way. I have a questioning mind and like to understand things and this mental outlook is just foreign…but I would like to understand it.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille In my experience, politics is the only subject where people are sometimes unreasonably adamant about being right or wrong. There are other subjects that I’m very well informed on, but I don’t get into heated discussions, because people generally recognize that facts carry weight. In our present state of mind, in politics facts don’t always carry weight.

Demosthenes's avatar

@Hawaii_Jake I agree. I would say that discussing politics is sometimes more fruitless than discussing religion, because at least with religion you can acknowledge that you’re arguing interpretations and that the “facts” aren’t or can’t be known. Not so with politics, yet in the age of “alternative facts” politics is becoming more difficult to discuss objectively.

KNOWITALL's avatar

I feel like I’m simply trying to explain pov’s less represented here.

ucme's avatar

Neither of those things, on the super rare occasions it gets to that stage, I toy with them before seamlessly moving on.

seawulf575's avatar

@ucme glides in on silent wings to rake the opposition with his talons. I’m more of a bull that charges ahead. Wish I had wings…

ucme's avatar

Hey @seawulf575 nowt wrong with a good old fashioned trampling.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@seawulf Your patience and persistence are admirable though. At least to me.

kritiper's avatar

All three, but not too vehemently. Getting my point across is most important.

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